Digital Art is a contemporary form of Art produced with partial or total use of Digital Applications, or Presented on digital technology devices.
The term ‘digital art’ was first used in the 1980s in connection to an early computer painting program. Nowdays Digital art includes images done completely on computer or hand-drawn images scanned into a computer and finished using a software program like Adobe Illustrator.
Digital art can also involve animation and 3D virtual sculpture renderings as well as projects that combine several technologies. Digital Art falls into three basic categories: digital painting, digital photography and fractals. There are several subcategories and an artist can combine them to create their own unique artwork.
2D Digital Painting
The artist creates 2D images totally in the computer virtual environment with the use of painting tools that emulate natural media styles. Sometimes referred to as “Natural Media”.
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This is a technique of combining many images from varying sources into one image. This is most commonly achieved by the use of layering techniques in image editing and paint software. The artist may also use images from x-rays or radar to produce images that the eye does not normally see, which expands the realm of human perception.
Integrated Digital Art
This is the “mixed media” of the digital art world. Artists combine any number of the techniques to achieve unique results. The digital environment is much less restricted than conventional mediums in this type of integration and manipulation.
3D: The artist uses 3D modeling and rendering software to essentially sculpt in virtual space. This method also makes use of all of the other methods.
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The artist uses vector drawing software and creates the image totally in the virtual environment. This makes use of shapes which are outlined and can be filled with various colors and patterns. This tends to produce a harder edged or graphic look.
This is art produced exclusively by mathematical manipulations. This is the so-called “computer generated” art. The art here lies in the invention of the mathematical formulas themselves and the way the programs are written to take advantage of the display capabilities of the hardware. The art also lies in the creative intentions and subsequent selections of the artist/mathematician.